Raiders Motley Review: Trust In Gruden At An All-Time Low

Rather spectacularly, the Las Vegas Raiders’ playoff hopes came crumbling down under the bright lights of Thursday Night Football.

The Rod Marinelli-led defense looked eerily similar to the one Paul Guenther led the previous 13 games. The $7.5 million backup, Marcus Mariota, stepped in and tried to keep the season alive, until a killer interception and a goal-line stall in overtime ended the Silver and Black’s snake-bitten season all but officially.

The Raiders in one sentence

“The Mariota Magic fell short.”

Mariota played very well. He was solid with his arm and his scrambling/read-option ability added another dimension to the offense. He played hard, kept the Raiders in the game, and deserves a lot of credit for that. However, that interception with two minutes remaining in regulation was horrendous and should’ve ended the game had the Chargers not been the Chargers. Then, he led the Silver and Black down the field with the first possession of overtime, only to come up 15 feet short of paydirt. Let’s shut down the Mariota over Carr talk even though the gap isn’t unimaginable.

Name the Game

Skipping this section this week. It’s far too painful. Desperately, RaiderNation would like to forget it, so let’s not validate that game by naming it.

Stat of the Game

Josh Jacobs- 2.9 Yards Per Carry. (26 carries for 76 yards)

The Raiders have invested far too much in their ground game to get less than three yards a carry from their lead back. On the offensive line, we have a first-round pick (Kolton Miller) and three other highly paid linemen (Rodney Hudson, Gabe Jackson, Trent Brown). On top of that, we invested a first-round pick in ’28’. So, 2.9 yards a carry is a complete failure from the whole lot of them, and playcaller/head Coach Jon Gruden, who is very predictable and lacks creativity with the ground game. Not ideal for a $100 million man.


The Carr blew a tire early and Mariota played well in his absence.

To speak on the Raiders’ entire quarterback situation, they should probably move off ‘4’ this offseason. He has been very good this season and by most meaningful metrics. However, the Raiders are stuck in purgatory and need to start over. Carr’s trade value should be relatively high with two years of contract remaining with cap hits of $22.1 million and $19.9 million. He should be able to bring in a mid-first rounder from a team like the Washington Football Team, and other clubs. Then, the Raiders could use Mariota as a one-year bridge for a young quarterback such as Zach Wilson, Trey Lance, Mac Jones, Kyle Trask.

Of course, had the Raiders not made a habit of wasting early draft picks and high-priced free-agent contracts, they wouldn’t be in this situation, where moving Carr would be best for the player and the team. It’s a shame the organization wasted the best signal-caller they’ve had since Rich Gannon.

The Good News

Next Question.

The Bad News

Another year without the playoffs. Faith in Gruden is at an all-time low.

Related: Week 15 Reactions: Raiders must keep looking for defensive coordinator

Random Thoughts about the Raiders

  • The Defense still sucks, guess it wasn’t all Paul Guenther’s fault.
  • Darren Waller is improving, somehow.
  • The Raiders’ last first first-round picks, Clelin Ferrell, Josh Jacobs, Johnathan Abrams, Henry Ruggs, and Damon Arnette.
    • At best, four of them look bad and one looks meh. (still early though)
  • Maxx Crosby is MIA.
  • Bryan Edwards getting majorly out-snapped by Zay Jones is a disaster.
  • Raekwon McMillian had some decent moments, more of him, please.
  • Cory Littleton is the most disappointing free agent ever.
  • *Throws Flag* Number 27 (Treyvon Mullen) for pass interference.

Apology of the Week

I’m just sorry that I had to watch that on an otherwise very fine Thursday night. I’m sorry you guys had to watch it too. But I’m mostly sorry I had to watch it.



One Prediction about the Raiders for Next Week

The Raiders lose and it ruins everybody’s Saturday nights.

You May Also Like: Raiders Don’t Deserve Playoff Spot After TNF Nightmare

Top Photo: Issac Brekken/Associated Press

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Move on from Carr? Disagree 100%. He has been the most consistent force the Raiders have had since his second year and the players respect him. When the Raiders get him weapons, he only gets better. Like 2016 and we will also include 2017, the 2020 Raiders are at the bottom on defense. The offense almost every game puts up at least 30 pts. You should be winning most of your games with that number unless your defense is giving up more than 30 also.


The reason they came up short is on Gruden, not Mariotta.

Raymundo Ramirez

Was anybody else questioning why Marriotta was throwing on that down when he threw the interception? Run the ball, run the clock. It was 1st and 10 and in field goal range before the 2 minute warning. Marriotta ran back and tackled the runner after the pick… pretty impressive.

Denny Hurst

Same shit every year from Carr. It’s time to move on Raiders.


Lose gruden, he is calling plays from the 90’s. Very predictable. Play#13 more. Carr is to scared to be a leader.


Gruden needs to tap out, I watch teams with innovative offenses and then I watch ours. Shanahahn, Reid, Bienamy just so innovative. Gruden can’t his wideouts involved, unacceptable.

jose Rodriguez

Gruden a midst covid, injury s
Needs to evaluate his preformance and get a real defense before the team bales on him. LB. S defensive lineman
LET’S not forget no 15 with the butter finger s.


The game has passed you by Gruden


They should never have left Oakland, period!

Boss game

The whole coaching staff Must go including Gruden


10 years of Mr. Fraud at the helm? Typical Raiders idea.

Richard Ramsawh

Bruh, you’re pathetic at telling the full story. Mariotta threw a pick that didn’t result in points for the Chargers, or did you even realize this? On our ensuing possession the refs allowed back to back pass interferences. Either one of them would have gotten us to at least a FG attempt. Mariota played damn well considering he was thrust into action with no first team reps on a new team. Your slick comment about the defense is naive. First off, they allw 24 point by the end of regulation, easily good enough for us to pull out a win.… Read more »


Go Raiders!


Hmmmm, they said the same thing about Andy Reid.


New stadium did not help


Raiders suck for the last 30 years


People believe the game passed Gruden by or that his time is over. Well I say he was never a good coach n has done absolutely ZIP in his career deserving of his contract, his control, self-proclaimed football genius profile, n definitely not QB developing guru. He didn’t deserve all the hype n job with MNF either. All that did was inflate an already supersized ego that was n still is unwarranted. Gruden publicly stated he would return to Raiders the money on his contract should he fail. But Gruden is a known liar n won’t return the mney like… Read more »

Raider M.C. Squared

That’s why I’m focused more on the NATION than the team. Tired of the disappointment. How long are you supposed to be a sorry team?

Last edited 1 year ago by Raider M.C. Squared
Raider M.C. Squared

That’s why I’m focused more on the NA7TION than the team. Tired of the disappointment. How long are you supposed to be a sorry team?

Joe Ciccarelli

Carr needs to be perfect every damn game bc the D is garbage. He’s the most consistent player we have. I’m sorry but it’s Gruden who we need to move on from. For his horrendous play calling in the red zone and waiting to change D coach with 3 VIP must win games is mind boggling. Not to mention Ruggs and Edwards not getting involved in the game plan. Hey it’s something ever year. Still love my Raiders but we need changes within. Merry Christmas everyone


Raiders Suck , Chargers took them off the playoff once again!!

Gabe Martin

Not a horrendous pic at all. One that a savvy receiver would have batted down. It is weird to say the least that so many Raider fans and writers obsess about offensive football. The reason the Raiders are inconsistent and lack an identity of note is because: Failure to play complimentary football. Failure to play consistently with speed, energy, executing fundamentals. Too many mistakes, blown coverages, failure to contain. Pressure the opposing QB consistently, flip the turnover ratio equals wins. It really is this simple.

Big mike

moving Carr would be best for the player and the team. It’s a shame the organization wasted the best signal-caller they’ve had since Rich Gannon.
I COULDN’T AGREE MORE. I LOVE CARR BUT IT’S A SHAME HE’S WASTING HIS CAREER ON A BAD TEAM. Imagine if he was with a good team, with a good defense and coaching. He would be leading for MVP every year. I’ve been a Raider fan since 1960 and I always will be but what’s happing to Carr is killing me.


Fake ass Raider fans need to move on and find a new team to hate. I love writers analysts and such who hate on us thats fuel!! We just arent using it. All head coaches have a niche and once the rest of the league stops that you have to adjust.Chuckie is in his adjustment phase.This is where you find one of those innovative position coaches to help out! Remember this a complete retool 1 playofff appearance in 18 years! Carr aint broke how many games has Gruden’s offense and Carr got the lead and leave it to the defense… Read more »

Gregory Moses

The head coach is a TOTAL disgrace. He has not done anything to make the Raiders a playoff team, or he has done nothing to make the raiders a winning team. Head coaches are supposed to have a visions to make a team better and he didn’t even do that, he didn’t have a vision. He is all talk.
He is the one who made the Raiders a failure. He seems like he doesn’t know how to coach. One thing he does to well is pick up his pay check, but has not accountability for failing the Raider fans.

sean paul campanella

Trade carr 4 defense ….all is well going forward. Marcus ..”.is able to rotate his hips “…case closed

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